ITGS Syllabus

Monday, March 05, 2007

Topic 205

Monitoring patients by Simon Ruiz

What is "Monitoring patients"?

Monitoring patients is the direct act of taking care of the patient inside the room without the physical presence of the doctor inside the room. It is purposed for keeping track of patient's basic health conditions such as blood pressure, body temperature, and so forth.

Why do patients need monitoring?

Patient monitoring is vital to care in operating and emergency rooms, intensive care and critical care units. Additionally, it has proven invaluable for respiratory therapy, recovery rooms, out-patient care, transport, radiology, cath labs, gastroenterology departments, ambulatory, home, and sleep screening applications. Patient monitoring can reduce the risk of infection and other complications, as well as assist in providing for patient comfort.

A vast majority of long-term patients in the world don't take their medication in time, intentionally or not. In the U.S. alone, this represents an additional $100 billion yearly expense due to unexpected emergency hospital admissions. It is therefore crucial to gather accurately patient medical data in real time. For this purpose, firms have developed various mobile health toolkit to perform this task. With these technological toolkit consisting of a say, Java-based middleware and Bluetooth-enabled sensors, all the medical patient data can be wirelessly exported to a doctor's office via a PC or a cell phone.

Here are some facts to start with: About 55% of all long-term patients in the US and in Europe, it is estimated, do not take their medication (either not taking the prescribed medication at all or more than 14 hours late) Around 12% of all hospital admissions in the UK are due to this non-compliance, the damage to the US taxpayer is an estimated USD 100 billion a year. Most of the patients that do not comply are simply forgetful (about 10% deliberately do not want to take the medication).

So how can we solve this problem?

Gathering current patient medical data promptly and accurately is vital to proper health care. The usefulness of electronic data capture (EDC) has been demonstrated in applications such as the home monitoring of at-risk heart patients via devices that transmit blood pressure from the home to a central database. Removing transcription effort (and associated inaccuracies) alone is worth the institution of EDC; but the side benefit of timeliness offers the hope of identifying and responding to trends as they occur, perhaps preventing a dangerous event, instead of simply allowing its diagnosis after the danger has manifest.

This is why firms have developed its mobile health toolkit. It is basically for gathering measurement data from a range of devices, and present it to management software via a well defined, and easily implemented interface.

Solutions based on the technological mobile health toolkit can improve the quality of patient monitoring while reducing overall healthcare costs. Moreover, it ensures that more timely information is available to medical caregivers. Medication-compliance systems can leverage the toolkit as a basis for intelligent reminders. For example, patients can be prompted to take their medication if the system detects that it is overdue.


Monitoring patients by Romeo Wu

There are many ways of Monitoring patients for example the most common way is to set cameras in each patient’s room and monitor him 24/7. You can also monitor a patient by using radios, some advance medical equipments and etc. Treating physicians will decide the actual frequency of necessary assessments according to a patient’s individualized need for medical care and habit follow-up, as well as to published or local guidelines, as suitable. As a minimum, however, a optional schedule of assessments has been developed based on input of physicians from the international medical community with expertise in the care of patients with Gaucher disease. The recommended schedule represents the core assessments that are currently thought to monitor Gaucher-related clinical manifestations and to stage disease progression across the life-long course of the disease. The assessments include hematologic, visceral, skeletal assessments, and quality of life evaluations.


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